My wife suggested I coach my little ones U10 girls recreational soccer team since I am always out there helping her coaches in the past. I have played as a youth, coached middle school and refereed. We did a spring league at our church to help kids learn the sport together so we are coaching together in our city league. I saw your book and bought it right away. An awesome book with great points that opened my eyes up to be better at coaching with girls. I am even going to use some of the points tonight in our first team meeting! I will be having this book with me the whole season.
Seven in 10 children in the US quit organized sports by the age of 13 and girls give up at six times the rate of boys. ALISON FOLEY digs below the figures and asks how we can retain our teens in soccer amid competition.
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Alison Foley, coach of Boston College’s Division I Women’s Soccer Team from 1997-2018 and the winningest coach in Boston College history, discusses how to combat the trend of teen girls dropping out of sports.
I was thrilled to be invited to be a part of an NBC internal event. NBCUniversal APA (Asian Pacific Amerian) & ITP (In The Parenthood) Present A Conversation with Julie Chu & Mia Wenjen, moderated by Abby Chin.
More than half of girls QUIT SPORTS by the end of puberty—more than half. QUIT. This is a dramatic statistic that is much higher for girls than for boys. And we want our girls to play sports. The positive effect sport has on girls has been proven over and over.
Healthier body image
Better social decisions around alcohol and drugs
Lower pregnancy rates
The key here is what can we do as parents, coaches, educators, and mentors to keep girls in sport. We’ve come up with five tips, but remember, the main ingredient is always pretty simple…keep it “fun”.
1.) Increase female Role Models: In a world that worships external beauty, we all need to support and elevate positive females who are strong and confident, not just pretty. Girls need to see strength as beauty both inside and out. They need to view females competing and challenging each other as healthy. We need more female coaches, trainers, and sports administrators. Female coaches can connect with girls and understand their experiences. Only 23% of youth coaches in the US are female. That number is the lowest on record since 2012 and is down from 28 % in 2016. In 1979 Title IX was passed to get gender equity in all opportunities in sports, but we are still way off from equal playing fields in any capacity. We have to push this message and encourage women to lead in different roles in sports. There are apps and programs such as She can Coach and Mojo.sport that give women the tools, training ideas, and practice outlines to help equip novice coaches and empower them to coach confidently.
Below is a link to an interview Aisling did about her project Keep Your Girls Playing which she has been rolling out since September with the coaches, parents and 12-13 year old girls in our local GAA club:
There has been very positive feedback from the wider GAA community about her interview and she’s been happily recommending your book to any of the coaching educators that have been in contact. Hopefully you might get a few more book orders from Ireland!
And her ‘Keeping Girls Playing Project’ is having such a positive impact in Cuala that it will hopefully give other clubs some really helpful food for thought as to how best to keep girls involved in team sport.
“When I was researching this I came across a survey saying that one of two girls will drop out of team sport by the age of 13 and are three times more likely to give it up than boys are.
“It kind of shocked me at first because I know from my own personal experience of all the benefits that come from playing team sport.
“But when I thought about it made sense because my own team lost around half of our players by the time we were 13 and struggled to field a team at that age.
With seventy percent of all kids quitting organized sports by age 13, and with girls dropping out of sports at six times the rate of boys, it became clear that I needed to showcase Asian-American female athletes. Girls of every ethnicity need to see Asian-American females succeeding in sports to know that everyone can dream of stepping up on an Olympic podium.
Everyone deserves to see themselves in the pages of a book. Now, Mia Wenjen brings the accomplishments of Asian Pacific American female athletes to life with incredible stories of their amazing accomplishments. Readers rejoice with these extraordinary women as they overcome obstacles to prevail in their sport. [nonfiction picture book, for ages 8 and up]
Eun Jung “EJ” Lee Ok (Korean American) is thought to be one of the greatest point guards ever to play women’s college basketball.
Chloe Kim (Korean American) is the youngest snowboarder to win Olympic Gold.
Miki Gorman(Japanese American) is the only female marathon runner to win both the Boston Marathon and the New York Marathon, twice!
Victoria Manalo Draves (Filipino & European American), a diver, is the first woman to win two Gold Medals in both springboard and platform in the same Olympics games, the first Asian-American to medal at an Olympics game, and the first Filipino to win a Gold Medal.
Evelyn Tokue Kawamoto-Konno (Japanese American) learned to swim competitively in a ditch through Soichi Sakamoto’s Three-Year Swim Club and is the first Japanese-American female to win an Olympic Medal.
Julie Chu (Chinese & Puerto Rican American), a hockey player, is the first Asian-American female to compete for the United States in the Winter Olympics for a sport other than figure skating. She took home three silver medals and one bronze medal from five Olympics.
Natasha “Tasha” Kai (Filipino, Hawaiian, Chinese & European American) is the first player from Hawaii to make the full U.S. National Women’s Soccer team. In 2008, she helped the team earn an Olympic Gold medal.
Michelle Wie (Korean American) is the youngest female to compete on the PGA Tour and the youngest USGA champion in an adult event.
Kristi Yamaguchi (Japanese American) is a two-time Olympic Gold Medal ice skating champion, a two-time singles World Champion, and a two-time pairs National Champion.
Amy Chow(Chinese American) is the first Asian American woman to win an Olympic Gold Medal in gymnastics.
Anona Naone Napoleon(Native Hawaiian) won the International Makaha Surfing Competition.
Michelle Waterson(Thai & European American) is a Mixed Martial Arts champion.
Liane Lissa Sato (JapaneseAmerican) took home a Bronze Medal for the United States Women’s Volleyball Team at the Olympics held in Barcelona.
Catherine Mai-Lan Fox (Vietnamese & European American) is a two-time Olympic Gold Medal winner for swimming.
Megan Khang (Hmong American) is the first Hmong American to play on the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) Tour.
Mohini Bhardwaj(Indian & Russian American) is the first Indian-American gymnast to medal at the Olympics.
Naomi Osaka(Japanese & Haitian) is the first female Asian player to hold the number one ranking by the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA).
I hope you will share my Kickstarter project on social media when it starts on February 15 and consider donating if you are able.
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BEST #OWNVOICES CHILDREN’S BOOKS: My Favorite Diversity Books for Kids Ages 1-12 is a book that I created to highlight books written by authors who share the same marginalized identity as the characters in their books.
Alison Foley will be giving a seminar on Pandemic Athletes: Navigating the Collegiate Recruiting Process Through COVID-19.
Thursday, February 18th, 4pm-5pm PT / 7pm-8pm ET
This seminar will help high school student-athletes, their families, and coaches understand how to navigate the college recruiting process, specifically through COVID-19.
The NCAA has put a recruiting ban on many college sports where the coaches cannot do an in-person evaluation or have you visit campus. This has left athletes feeling desperate on how to communicate and showcase their talents to coaches. This seminar will provide you with specific ways to keep your recruiting process moving forward, including:
How to communicate with college coaches
How to focus on your academics
How to navigate standardized tests and financial aid
How to use your network to strengthen your chances for recruiting
You’ll leave with tactical advice and lists of actions you can take, all developed by a coach who knows the game inside and out.
The cost is $30 and limited to 30 people. Register here.
For those looking to go to college on a sports scholarship, the recruiting process can be both daunting and overwhelming.
The Elusive Full Ride Scholarship: An Insider’s Guide breaks down the process step-by-step to help parents and athletes navigate the system and find the right college fit. Inside the pages of this book, readers will discover the answers to essential questions, such as: how do I get recruited?, what are coaches looking for?, and when does recruitment start?
The book also covers crucial topics including recruiting Do’s & Don’ts; ways to communicate with coaches, teams, and schools; how academics play into the recruiting process; how to build a recruitment kit; the role parents play, and much more. This guide lays out all the advice needed to maneuver through the recruiting and scholarship process successfully – and with minimum stress.